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Series / Mr. Young

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Who you calling "kid"?

Mr. Young is a Canadian teen sitcom made by Nelvana (one of their few non-animated creations) for YTV which debuted in 2011 and ran for three seasons consisting of 80 episodes total until 2013.

Having graduated from college at a relatively early age, 14-year-old Adam Young (Brendan Meyer) is hired by Finnegan High School as the science teacher. Adam tries to prove that he has valuable contributions to make to the strict, but cowardly Principal Tater (Milo Shandel).

In the meantime, he runs into an old friend, the dumb and sometimes troublemaking Derby von Derbotsford (Gig Morton), gets hounded by the class bully Jordan "Slab" Slabinski (Kurt Ostlund), a closeted science lover and ballet dancer, deals with the hang ups of his materialistic older sister Ivy (Emily Tennant) and falls for one of his students, the sweet and nice, but easily fooled Echo Zizzleswift (Matreya Fedor).

Many of the plots involve Adam's attempts to win Echo over (they usually revolve around him either trying to get her interested in him or needing to find a means of hiding his feelings for her in a sensitive moment).

The show's universe is that of an exaggerated and cartoonish one where reality is rarely followed and often nonsensical. The show has become highly popular, is adored by YTV, and includes a surprising amount of unnuendo. All three seasons are available for streaming on Netflix and Tubi.

This show contains examples of:

  • Absurd Phobia:
    • In "Mr. Picture Day", Adam is afraid of gorilla suits while Derby is afraid of leprachaun suits.
    • In "Mr. Matchmaker", Slab is afraid of milk.
  • Accidental Kiss:
    • Adam and Mrs. Byrne in "Mr. Candy" when she mistakes him for the ghost of her dead lover.
    • Adam also has one with Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer in "Mr. Elf."
  • A.I. Is a Crapshoot: ARTHUR
  • All Asians Know Martial Arts: Dang and his estranged brother Ding are both martial arts experts.
    • Which would make Dang a "Ninjanitor", as it were...
  • All Just a Dream: "Mr. Moth", "Mr. Claus", "Mr. Elf" and "Mr. Sci-Fi", though not exactly a dream and just simply a pitch Adam is giving for the movie.
  • All Love Is Unrequited: Adam loves Echo though the love is eventually reciprocated, Ivy loves Hutch, Derby loves Ivy and Mrs. Byrne loves Mr. Elderman.
  • Alma Mater Song: Mr. School Song
  • Almighty Janitor: Dang. In addition to martial arts prowess, he can also move incredibly fast, defy gravity, and even be in two places at once.
  • Almost Kiss: Pertaining to Adam and Echo alone: "Mr. Picture Day", "Mr. Shakespeare", "Mr. Moth", "Mr. Spring Break", "Mr. Pixel", "Mr. Invisible", "Mr. Sci-Fi" "Mr. Double Date", "Mr. Finale" and two in "Mr. First Impression". The latter eventually has a real one though.
  • Asleep in Class: Derby and Slab fall asleep upon hearing Adam's lesson. Even Adam admits to falling asleep in class.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: Attack of the Fifteen-Foot Hamster in "Mr. Tickleshmootz", Cyber!Slab in "Mr. Pixel" and chicken in "Mr. Spring Break" and "Mr. Sasquawk".
  • Bait-and-Switch: In "Mr. Scooter", Tater says "it would be terrible if when I opened this [mailbox], a boxing glove would come out and punch me in the face". He opens it... and finds a letter from Ireland.
  • Bestiality Is Depraved: Dang's brother Ding:
    Dang: Her name not Duck! She a quack-quack duck!
  • Bigger on the Inside: The show commonly uses this trope for the school lockers, which are used to an absurd degree (mainly by Derby) to store multiple objects and people in that wouldn't realistically be possible to fit in them.
  • Bookends: In the first and last episodes of the show, Adam receives a slice of bread with jam to the face and mentions what can be learned from this occurence.
    • Adam: "See, we're learning already. Velocity, adhesion, (in disgust) mold growth..."
  • Borrowed Catchphrase: In "Mr. Alligator":
    Derby: Got it. You're looking for a scaly, leathery, prehistoric beast.
    Mrs. Byrne: *appearing out of nowhere* You called?
    Adam and Derby: AAAA!
  • Bread, Eggs, Milk, Squick: In "Mr. Club", the secret club has a variety of penalties for infiltrators who don't fulfill the requirements to join the club: "The infiltrator must DYE... his coat the proper shade of grey if he wishes to join the club", "he will be BURIED... in debt once he pays the fine", "we will be forced to END HIS LIFE... time membership", and finally "he will be dunked naked into a tank of great white sharks".
  • Breathless Non Sequitur: Dang's school song, which he translated over the internet.
  • Burping Contest: In "Mr. Heart", when Adam and Derby are in Echo's stomach, Derby pops a gas bubble, causing Echo to burp accidentally. Slab interprets this as a challenge, and lets out a massive belch that blows Echo's hair straight back and leaves her with a Thousand-Yard Stare.
  • Butt-Monkey: Derby
    • Adam himself more often than not, being antagonized by his boss and variously ignored, insulted, pranked and thwarted by Derby.
    • Principal Tater is arguably the biggest example. Even in the opening he's the only person who seems unhappy to be in the show.
  • Call-Back / Continuity Nod: Make up about half the jokes.
  • Carpet of Virility: Slab appears to possess this when wearing an opened shirt. Whether or not it's Type 1 or 2 is unknown.
  • Caught on the Jumbotron: Right before school lets out in "Mr. Spring Break," Derby turns on his Kiss Cam and pans it around the class. It lands on Mr. Young and Echo right before the buzzer rings.
  • Childhood Friend Romance: Sort of. In Mr. Freshman, it's revealed that while Adam and Echo were briefly in the same 4th grade class together, they didn't exactly meet and he refused to do so because back then was when he thought Girls Have Cooties. He profusely regretted it the moment he realized it in present day.
  • Child Prodigy: Adam started college at age 9.
    • The new student Joseph in Mr. Brain.
  • Clothing Damage: Adam's Hulk-esque transformations in "Mr. Hyde" have reduced him to his last pair of pants by the end of the week.
  • Comedic Sociopathy: Lots of it, almost to the point of being a parody at times.
  • Continuity Porn: The entirety of "Mr. First Impression" is built on this.
  • Covert Pervert: Adam is generally more chivalrous than not (it's a children's show, after all) but sometimes dwells on things in a way that definitely crosses a line.
    Echo: Will it be visible with the naked eye?
    Adam: (spacing out) Naked... naked... naked.
    • When Adam finds out that Echo's career profile suggested she be a nurse, he daydreams of her in a short-skirted nurse's uniform and spends the rest of the episode doing ludicrous things to try and convince her to wear it.
  • Crapsack World: It's about as realistic as Family Guy and American Dad!.
  • Creepy Child: Chloe chases Derby all across a city and beats Ivy in a fight.
    • Lucy from "Mr. and Mrs. Roboto" has mannerisms exactly like a robot, and was initially introduced as one until The Reveal that she was a human.
  • Dirty Old Woman: Mrs. Byrne.
    Mrs. Byrne: All rise for the honourable Judge Byrne.
    Mr. Tater: Honourable? She obviously doesn't remember last year's staff party!
  • Disguised in Drag: Each of the male characters at some point, but especially Derby.
  • Dream Within a Dream: To an absurd level in Mr. Moth.
    • In Mr. Masterpiece, Derby daydreams about his past daydreams.
  • Dying Declaration of Love: Adam attempts this in "Mr. Meteor", but doesn't get far enough before he gets knocked out by a rock.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: Derby in the first episode actually sticks up for Adam when the rest of the class mocks him for being a kid teacher, which seems odd in light of later episodes where he's the one who insults Adam the most. He also seemed actually interested in science class, albeit only because he thought it would allow him to build a Frankenstein's Monster, whereas in later episodes he falls asleep the moment anything science-related is mentioned. Principal Tater also seemed more like a No-Respect Guy who gets spat on for no real reason, in contrast to his later portrayals as Too Dumb to Live and by his own admission having no principles, scruples, ethics, or morals of any kind.
  • Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": Several episodes have implied that Principal Tater's first name is actually "Principal".
    • "Mr. Finale" reveals it's actually George.
  • Enemy Mine: Adam and Tater team up to stop Derby from becoming superintendent in "Mr. Candidate", and against ARTHUR in "Mr. Roboto" and its Sequel Episode, "Mr. Roboto 2.0".
  • Failure Is the Only Option: Adam's attempts to get Echo interested in him will always go this route. At least until "Mr. First Impression''.
    • Adam's time travel plans to get Echo interested in him in "Mr. First Impression" for two specific reasons. For one thing, the more he changes things, the more messed up they get and two, in the end when he's put everything back to normal, his failure ironically ends in success.
  • Faked Rip Van Winkle: In one episode, Slab falls asleep in class and the other students decide to prank him into thinking he woke up in a future Dystopia by putting up futuristic signs in the classroom, for example, one advertising the cafeteria's Food Pills.
  • "Fantastic Voyage" Plot: In "Mr. Heart", Adam and Derby shrink down and enter Echo's body to cure her cold so that she can go to the Valentine's Day dance with Adam. At the end of the episode Echo, not knowing what the shrink ray is, accidentally shrinks Adam, Derby, and herself. The three are then unknowingly swallowed by Slab, who is seen entering the bathroom as the credits roll.
  • "Fawlty Towers" Plot: Mr. Elderman is a subversion; no one except Derby ever finds out that Mr. Elderman and Mr. Young are the same person.
  • First Kiss: "Mr. First Impression"
  • "Freaky Friday" Flip: "Mr. Switch." Adam ends up in Echo's body, Echo in Derby's, Derby in Slab's, Slab in Ivy's, Ivy in Dang's and Dang in Adam's. Considering the show's usual track record, the implications of the body swaps are kept remarkably tame.
    • Well, they did have Adam-in-Echo's-body attempting to check out his/her own ass. And failing miserably.
  • Gag Nose: Bethany in Mr. Servant.
  • Geek Reference Pool: Inverted. Adam, Derby, and Tater don't show any interest in fiction. It's the popular kids (Echo and Ivy) who are interested in "geeky" things.
  • The Glomp: Echo's been doing this to Adam since the pilot.
  • Held Gaze: When Adam plays Arthur to Echo's Guinevere, the post-hug eyelock looks like it's about to result in their First Kiss until Slab interjects.
  • Here We Go Again!: In "Mr. Moth", Echo wakes up from a dream in which Adam turned into a moth. When she wakes up, she finds Adam teaching the exact same lesson as he was in the dream. Then subverted when that itself turns out to be Derby's dream... within Adam's dream... within a peacock's dream.
  • Inept Talent Show Contestant: Echo is a far worse singer than she thinks.
    • Unlike most other examples of this trope where the person realises they can't sing, Echo never finds out.
  • It Makes Sense in Context: It's nigh-impossible to start watching an episode halfway through without being incredibly confused.
  • Japanese Ranguage: Vietnamese Ranguage on the part of Dang.
  • Karma Houdini: Preston Pickles attempted to murder Derby, but hasn't seemed to have gained any comeuppance.
  • Lady Looks Like a Dude: Slab's Mother.
    • In another episode, Tater calls Adam the worst teacher the school ever had, and Adam asks if he's even seen some of the other teachers, like Mrs. Strawperson, a scarecrow, Monsieur Marionette, a marionette, and worst of all, M. T. Chair, a guy who is late for everything.
  • Limited Social Circle:
    Adam: I'm going back to Finnegan High. Back to my friends!
    Derby: He has friends at Finnegan High?
    Slab: Not likely!
    Echo: Yeah, I've never seen him hanging out with anyone but us.
  • Locker Mail: Adam writes a hate letter to Echo that ends up in Slab's locker by mistake.
  • Long Hair Is Feminine: Adam tends to be very drawn to Echo's hair, having once asked her if he could cut off a lock to keep in his pocket. When his mind is swapped into her body, Adam/Echo stands there playing with Echo's hair with a vapid grin, saying "hair preeetty" until the other characters jog him out of it.
  • Love at First Sight: Kicks off the Adam and Echo plot.
  • Love Confession: Adam essentially admits his feelings to Echo on her birthday in "Mr. First Impression." Her startled reaction kicks off Adam's attempts to fix things from the start with her.
  • Love Letter Lunacy: "Mr. Love Letter"
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: It's implied in "Mr. Kidd" that Tater is Adam and Ivy's father.
  • Lyrical Dissonance: Musician Dark Demon's rendition of his own Death Maggot in Mr. Rock Star qualifies.
  • May–December Romance: Mr. Tater starts dating Rachel Young at the beginning of Season 2.
  • Mayfly–December Romance: Mrs. Byrne flirts with the disguised Adam and, later, Derby.
  • The Millstone: Derby is responsible for costing himself and his friends $150 million, and his obliviousness is a direct impediment to several of Adam's opportunities to get closer to Echo.
  • Mistaken Message: Adam's hate letter to Echo ends up in Slab's locker. This actually works to his advantage... until he realizes he can't take credit for the original letter without facing the bully's wrath.
  • Mr. Idiosyncratic Episode Naming
  • Moment Killer: In this show, anything and everything, but the worst might well be Slab at the end of "Mr. Invisible."
  • Multi-Part Episode: Mr. Space in the USA.
  • Mundane Fantastic: Most of the time the show seems close enough to reality (or at least a crapsack reality), many of its more bizarre events being explained away by Adams very advanced inventions (most of which are at least theoretically possible), dream sequences or elaborate jokes played by others, Adam even dismisses the existence of magic as purely fictitious at least twice so far. However Mrs Byrne is somewhere in her thousands, Dang is able to move at superhumanly fast and even appear inside space and computer programs, several monsters do exist in this universe, including a giant Chicken and Cyclops, Adam and Echo met aliens in one episode, multiple times the cast seemingly and causally break the laws of reality and strange things occur in Finnegan High from supernatural creatures walking the halls to portals to underworld appearing for the sake of a joke.
  • Murder Is the Best Solution: Adam tries to kill Hutch in "Mr. Shakespeare" to prevent him from kissing Echo in the school play.
    • Also in "Mr. Student", Adam attempts to avoid having to do a quiz with Slab by dropping an anvil on him. Fortunately Slab is Nigh-Invulnerable.
    • Again in "Mr. Kidd", Adam briefly considers killing Derby to avoid him telling Tater that he's dating Echo, but quickly decides against it.
    • Echo also suggests poisoning people to eliminate the competition for the paintings in "Mr. Masterpiece".
  • Necessary Fail: "Mr. First Impression." Or so Adam thinks until it turns out that his noninterference results in success with Echo.
  • Never Trust a Hair Tonic: Derby's hair tonic contained clorophyll, which somehow causes the hair to grow to absurd lengths when exposed to sunlight.
  • Not a Date: Echo has a habit of inviting Adam on these, particularly in "Mr. Mummy" and "Mr. Magic." Even a computer program with her personality in "Mr. Switch" staked that claim too.
    • In "Mr. Matchmaker", Echo says that it's possible for two people to go out and it to not be a date and that leads to Adam tricking her into going to dinner with him that night to discuss their plan for Tater and Rachel.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Derby shows at times that he may likely be smarter than he constantly appears to be.
  • Oblivious to Love: Echo has a cast-iron Weirdness Censor when it comes to Adam's crush, most of the time. The few times she's shown to have picked up on it, something invariably throws her off again.
  • Operation: Jealousy: Echo realizes that Adam might like her and tries to prove it. Unfortunately Adam's up to the same game... and there's a scarecrow in the mix.
  • Pair the Spares: Derby and Haley Strauperson at the end of Mr. Double Date. Though wouldn't that technically make Adam and Echo the eventual spares that get paired in that scenario?
    • Slab and Ivy at the end of Mr. Memory.
  • Parental Neglect: Hutch of all people, whose parents never threw him a birthday party (he was born on Halloween).
  • Picture Day: Mr. Picture Day
  • Punch-Clock Villain: When he's not bullying, Slab is actually fairly nice to Derby and the other nerds he picks on. He at many times also treats bullying like it's a job rather than actually who he is.
  • Reality Warper: All of the cast exhibit this at times, but none moreso than Derby.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Slab takes ballet, and his dream is to play the Prince in Swan Lake.
  • Relationship Upgrade: At the end of "Mr. First Impression," Adam and Echo are officially dating.
  • Romantic False Lead: Pretty much every guy Echo is with before she's with Adam.
  • Rube Goldberg Device: Slab presents his nerd-powered grape juice maker in Mr. Roboto 2.0, accompanied by, of all songs, not-Powerhouse.
  • Selective Obliviousness: In "Mr. Moth", Echo is suggested to be subconsciously aware that Adam is interested in her when it's revealed that most of the episode is her own dream.
    • Most people seem aware of Adam's feelings for Echo, including Ivy, but then that will change in order to have to complicate the plot of an episode. She's fully aware in "Mr. Impossible" in the lengths she goes to keep Adam from tampering with the quiz results so he'll end up with Echo but later on, in "Mr. Double Date", is no wiser for the ware when Echo begins to develop her own feelings for Adam and shares them with Ivy.
    • To an annoying degree in "Mr. Dance" when everyone continuously tells Tater that the elaborate prankster he's looking for is Derby and he ignores all of them each and every time and rambles on trying to eliminate other suspects. To be fair, he may be ignoring claims about it being Derby because it would be too easy and obvious.
  • Shipper on Deck: Inverted. Everybody knows about Adam's crush on Echo (including Ivy, except when it would be beneficial to her brother for her to remember) but nobody seems interested in the prospects of the two as a couple.
    • Derby occasionally shows his support, though usually amidst him also saying he thinks Echo is too good for Adam too.
  • Ship Tease: Adam and Echo from start to finish.
  • Shoehorned Acronym: In "Mr. Roboto", Adam creates an android student he names A.R.T.H.U.R., with the acronym standing for "Automated Robotic Teenager Hippopotamus Umbrella Rainbow". Adam made the last three letters of the acronym random words because he needed something for the "HUR" part.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Single Girl Seeks Most Popular Guy: Ivy is in love with Hutch, a football player.
  • Sequel Escalation: Occurs in spades in Mr. Roboto 2.0.
  • Sequel Hook: Mr. Spin-Off has several of these.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: Smart, kind, perpetually-single, responsible Adam versus vapid, petty, oblivious social butterfly Ivy.
  • Speak of the Devil: Parodied. Whenever someone says "Dang" when they're flustered, the school's janitor, Dang, pops out of nowhere. The show took this to Serial Escalation levels when he appeared in a virtual reality world.
  • Special Guest: Victoria Duffield appears as herself in Mr. Spring Break.
  • Status Quo Is God: Echo remains oblivious to Adam's crush.
    • Subverted as of "Mr. First Impression." Echo and Adam finally had their First Kiss and are officially dating.
    • Averted in several episodes, like Adam getting Tater to lift the ban on cheerleading.
  • Steven Ulysses Perhero: Mr. Young.
  • Super-Speed: Dang's apparent ability to be anywhere at any time is revealed to be this in "Mr. Time"
  • Sweet Polly Oliver: Less common than the guys, but the female characters occasionally cross-dress too.
  • Talent Show: Mr. Talent Show
  • Talking in Your Dreams: Dang dreams of being the janitor for Lady Gaga.
  • Teacher/Student Romance: Adam would love one with Echo, but it never seems to pan out.
    • It does eventually.
  • Teen Genius: Adam.
  • Time Travel: "Mr. First Impression" sees Adam using a time travel device to try and make a better first impression on Echo.
  • Token Minority: Dang, the janitor.
    • Token Nonhuman: ARTHUR, Mrs. Strawperson, and Sasquawk (a robot, scarecrow, and giant chicken respectively).
  • Too Dumb to Live: Derby is an idiot, Ivy is also an idiot, Mr. Tater is even more of an idiot, and Slab is utterly brain-dead, the latter two needing to check to verify their own names.
    • Echo, who is the smartest girl in Adam's class, while not stupid, but you'd think she would notice Adam likes her earlier than she did.
      • Somewhat justified, in that its made clear on several occasions she is quite gullible, and highly oblivious (she often fails to see through paper thin disguises and doesn't notice clear implications of what she or others say.) So she's not as smart as some would say, she mealy seems to be smarter because she's surrounded by idiots.
  • Totally Radical: The Eighties flashbacks in Mr. DNA.
  • True Love's Kiss: What gives Echo her memories of Adam back in Mr. Kidd.
  • Truth Serums: Adam accidentally creates a "truth gas", forcing him, Derby, Echo, Slab, and Ivy to speak only truth.
  • Twist Ending: In Mr. Roboto, it turns out that ARTHUR is still "alive".
    • In Mr. Big Brother, Chloe finds Derby at Adam's house.
  • Unkempt Beauty: She didn't look particularly unkempt, but the reason for Echo's harsh reaction to Adam's Love Confession in "Mr. First Impression" turns out to be that she wanted to look special for him when they had their First Kiss.
  • Unrequited Love Switcheroo: In "Mr. Sasquawk", Adam has to tell Sasquawk he's not interested in Echo to keep her from getting thrown off the building and it's suggested that Echo suspected Adam had feelings for her and she was considering reciprocating. Also in "Mr. Double Date", while Adam still has his feelings for Echo, Echo (still not knowing he has them), develops feelings for him and tries to get him to go out with her only for it to backfire when he sets her up with Derby, so she resolves to trying to make Adam jealous only for things to backfire further. The feelings carry over in the following episodes as well as revealed in "Mr. First Impression".
  • Voices Are Mental: Zig-zagged in "Mr. Switch". Adam in Echo's body, Echo in Derby's body, Ivy in Dang's body, and Derby in Slabb's body use the voices belonging to their current bodies, but Dang in Adam's body and Slabb in Ivy's body use the voices belonging to their original bodies.
  • Wedgie: Echo gives nerds wedgies when filling in for the bully Slab.
  • Wilhelm Scream: The kid who gets crushed by lockers in the Pilot.
  • Yank the Dog's Chain: In "Picture Day", Echo raises Adam's hopes of romantic activity with her descriptions of the things he missed, and then dashes them by doing the opposite of what he expected.